Last year, we did an adaptation of H.G. Wells’ classic War of the Worlds since it was the 80th anniversary of Orson Welles’ 1938 radio broadcast. It was great fun to update a radio adaptation to the present day and set it in and around Washington, DC.
This year, we were asked to once again pick a known work (as opposed to something original like Rogue Tyger or Quorum). However, the organizers also said that parody was an option and it’s the 40th anniversary of both the original Alien and the TV show Buck Rogers in the 25th Century…
Ladies and gentlemen –and assorted aliens– get ready for Nostromo 2: Electric Alien Boogaloo (featuring Chuck Codgers).
So, we’re still working on the script and this week someone posted a link to the full runthrough to Space Ace, the sci-fi themed sequel to the interactive animated video game Dragon’s Lair.
Beats having to cough up a whole lotta quarters to try and get through it all, right?
Anyway, it’s been a fun, silly inspiration as we continue to work on the script. More details to come as we get closer!
We don’t know the exact date and time of our performance –it’ll be sometime that Memorial Day Weekend– but the whole convention is a lot of fun.
If you’re going to be in the Washington, DC area that weekend, please come by National Harbor. We know that tickets are now on sale — and there’s a 30% off code (EV30) you can use through today, February 15th.
The most immediate answer would be that JAT takes its name from Team Jabberwocky, my production company. But then, you ask, why did I name my company “Team Jabberwocky?”
Well, the “team” part is easy. Any theater or film project is assembling a team or sorts. And back in 2004, I was planning to assemble a team for the 48 Hour Film Project. I knew I wanted “Team Something,” but what was the something?
I recalled that when I was doing classical theater, I often warmed up my voice reciting “Jabberwocky” the poem by Lewis Carroll. Your average Shakespeare play has a host of words you generally don’t bandy about with in everyday life (apart from the fellow theater geek reading this and saying, “That’s not true!”). It’s also fun to recite, to feel the words move around in your mouth, to try and press here and there and imbue the meaning into terms that Carroll made up and make sure they sound true (because, of course, ‘frabjous’ and other terms are wonderfully truthful and sound like they mean).
So I decided on Team Jabberwocky and, when it came time to form a company, that’s the name I chose. It has a touch of the fantastical without taking ourselves too seriously (though we do take our productions seriously).
So there you go. In part, because of the whimsy and inventiveness inherent in Carroll’s work on the Alice books, that’s why we’ll eventually be doing an adaptation of them and why the Alice in Wonderland giveaway is part of our promotions right now as we await the debut of our 2019 season.
I’ll close with a recital of “Jabberwocky” by Christopher Lee, who did such a wonderful job of voicing the creature himself in the Tim Burton movie (I shared a clip yesterday). Enjoy!
One of the reasons we’re so keen to do an adaptation (maybe a couple of adaptions) of the Alice books is because we know our company of actors will dive into the various voices with relish.
So even if we hold off on the musical version of Alice in Wonderland we talked about yesterday, we know we could have no end of fun with characters like the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat, and so many additional characters that are often cut from the feature film adaptions (the books can be quite episodic, which we think will lend itself to an audio mini-series.
Of course, there are all the visuals we don’t get, but rewatching the various films as we got ready for the Alice in Wonderland giveaway, I really enjoyed Sterling Holloway’s take on the Cheshire Cat. I know he’s most often thought of as the voice of Winnie-the-Pooh, but his distinctive voice is just right in all sorts of roles.
Of course the modern Tim Burton films are so visual effects-heavy, that they’re almost animated films in and of themselves… and again, they have some great vocal talent. Listen, for example, to the oft underrated, never duplicated Christopher Lee as the Jabberwock:
I should mention that all three of the films are part of the giveaway we’re running, which ends this Friday, so certainly sign up if you’re feeling a little mad.
We mentioned in last week’s Alice in Wonderland giveaway announcement is that one of the reasons we think it’s a great fit is both are name and that we’re almost certainly going to do an adaptation of the Alice books sooner rather than later.
One of the ideas we’ve been thinking about is doing it as a full-blown musical version, possibly availing ourselves of JAT regular Brooks Tegler, whom you might recall contributed some great jazz music to Quorum.
What you may not know is the Disney Alice in Wonderland created its own jazz standard in the form of the theme.
When we realized that, we realized a very jazz-based Alice in Wonderland might just be what we should aim for. What do you all think?